Gather family members young and old for a bright, elegant Easter dinner outdoors, ringing in the new season. While children hunt for eggs, adults can sip wine and enjoy a refreshing meal, sharing in the festive occasion. These easy entertaining tips, simple recipes and refreshing table ideas will help create a memorable celebration.
Set the table in a shady spot; watch the path of the light the day before to get a sense of where the sun sets.
For an easy hors d’oeuvre, set out goat cheese, strawberries and baguette slices.
Use a melon baller to scoop out rounds of butter; pass at the table with the bread.
Create informal centerpieces using garden flowers in old-fashioned jars.
For wine, serve a dry to fruity white, such as Pinot Gris, and a light red, such as Beaujolais or Pinot Noir.
|Sparkling Mint Lemonade
Lemonade is a welcome drink when springtime temperatures start to rise. Choose lemons that are plump and firm. Before juicing each lemon, press and roll it firmly against a work surface to break some of the membranes holding the juice.Scroll down to the bottom of this post to learn how to add your own creative touches.
|Baby Spinach Salad with Roasted Strawberries
The flavor of this salad sparkles with the bright acidity of red wine vinegar, its tartness tempered by the sweetness of fresh orange juice. Roasting strawberries with a bit of sugar intensifies their fruitiness and softens their texture, creating a nice counterpoint to the salty cheese and crunchy toasted almonds.
|Asparagus with Orange Hollandaise Sauce
Hollandaise, the classic sauce for dressing warm asparagus in France, is usually flavored with lemon. The orange juice used in this recipe is a nice change of pace and goes particularly well with the vegetable.
|Braised Tarragon Chicken
This main course combines slow-cooked chicken with leeks, carrots and fresh herbs. Creamy mashed potatoes make a nice accompaniment, as well.
|Strawberry Rhubarb Galette
Strawberries and rhubarb are a classic springtime combination. This galette, a rustic tart that shows off the fruit in the center, can be served with a small scoop of ice cream, with a dollop of crème fraîche or whipped cream, or on its own, with just a dusting of confectioners’ sugar.
It’s easy to make lemonade more special by adding simple creative touches. The more you do to dress up everything, from the pitcher and the garnishes to the glasses and serving tray, the more the drinks become a part of the celebration.
|Gather lemon slices, mint sprigs, citrus (or mint) leaves, a large glass pitcher, lemongrass stalks (or bamboo skewers, chopsticks or swizzle sticks), crushed ice, cocktail napkins, glasses and a tray.|
|Layer half of the lemon slices in the pitcher; top with the mint sprigs and then top with another layer of lemon slices and fill with ice.|